In 1985, October was nationally recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness month. The aim was to increase the early detection of the disease by encouraging women to have mammograms. As the years have progressed, we have learned that men are also affected and early detection is the key to survival.
According to the American Cancer Society, when breast cancer is detected early and is in the localized stage, the 5-year relative survival rate is 99%. Early detection includes doing monthly breast self-exams and scheduling regular clinical breast exams and mammograms.
How common is breast cancer?
The American Cancer Society’s estimates for breast cancer in the United States for 2022 are:
- About 287,850 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women
- About 51,400 new cases of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) will be diagnosed
- About 43,250 women will die from breast cancer. Breast cancer mainly occurs in middle-aged and older women. The median age at the time of breast cancer diagnosis is 62
- About 2,710 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in men
- About 530 men will die from breast cancer
For more of our “Barrett Goes Pink” pics, check out the Barrett Instagram page!
Support of a Co-Worker or Loved One
Supporting your co-worker or family member who has been diagnosed with cancer comes with many challenges. It’s hard to watch the ones we love suffer, struggle, and possibly die. The fear associated with the illness can make figuring out how to support in a way that will truly benefit those affected tricky.
Tips and Considerations For support
- Match your support with their values:
Keep in mind who they are, where they are at in their treatment or survivorship, what else is going on in their life, what you know them to love and care about
- Listening is sometimes the best support you can provide:
Asking questions about how your Person feels and what they are experiencing will help you better understand their needs
- Ask open-ended questions that offer an opportunity for them to explore their feelings and needs:
Allow them to drive the conversation and stay within their comfort zone
- Don’t bog them down with questions seeking details about cumbersome topics:
Their mind is in a different place
- Learn about the kind of cancer your person has been diagnosed with:
Take it upon yourself, rather than requiring them to teach you – Seek credible resources
- Get ready to listen, distract, and support however you and your person do it best:
Make it real
- Be genuine and do it your way
While there is a lot to navigate in this dynamic, you’ll find your way. Meet the challenge and learn what you can for the sake of your buddy, sibling, cousin, classmate, or colleague who is going through a really difficult time.
Be kind, be available, and set reasonable boundaries. Take care of yourself as well, as a supporter you may feel lost or alone. Cancer is full of difficult emotions for everyone.
Making a Difference
There are many ways to help – Donate, purchase a HOPE kit, and investigate the RISE event. Here are some resources to help you get started:
- American Cancer Society | Information and Resources about for Cancer: Breast, Colon, Lung, Prostate, Skin
- Breast Cancer Foundation | Susan G. Komen®
- Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2022 – National Breast Cancer Foundation
Looking Ahead – 2023
In honor of those who survived, lost, and are battling Cancer in 2023, WiN will distribute “Pink” early so that each Friday during October we can recognize the importance of early detection and support of breast cancer.
Barrett Industries continues the effort to bring awareness and will challenge us to make a difference.